NIA 9 trial resumes after a month hiatus

Thursday, May 03, 2018

The criminal trial involving nine former officials of the defunct National Intelligence Agency (NIA) yesterday resumed before presiding Judge Kumba Sillah-Camara at the High Court in Banjul after the 14th prosecution witness, Seedy Saidybah’s last testimony on 28th March, 2018.

After Seedy Saidybah testimony, the court proceeded on Easter Vacation and upon resumption of the court sitting, the 4th accused was reportedly ill and was absent from court leading to adjournments.

Continuing his evidence in chief, Seedy Saidybah recalled that Solo Sandeng was in the company of six other detainees on the 14th April, 2016 at the NIA headquarters in Banjul.

The witness said he received a call from his boss, James Mendy through the intercom to bring the keys to the cell and upon arrival he met Solo Sandeng standing beside the cell door together with Babucar Sallah and Tamba Mansary.

The witness further said that he hand over the keys to James Mendy and returned to his office at the reception at the main gate.

Seedy Saidybah informed the court that the cell name is called Babadinka meaning the hole where Alligators live and after replacing the keys, James Mendy called him again requesting that he brings the keys as he was informed that Lamin Darboe had come to get Solo Sandeng.

The witness revealed that upon arrival, he met James Mendy and Lamin Darboe and handed the keys to Mendy and left. He however explained that at the time of the detainees arrival, they were all in good shape judging by the way the walk, talk and their appearance.

Seedy Saidybah said he saw Solo Sandeng when Lamin Darboe came to get him, adding that he was at his office at the time as that was the last time he Solo Sandeng.

The witness testified that he saw Noghoi Njie, Fatoumatta Jawara and Fatou Camara when they were brought into the NIA  but after they were taking inside by Tamba Mansary and Babucarr Sallah and brought out the trio couldn’t walk and their condition was very bad.

The witness further testified that the trio were assisted by one Lamin Bojang alias Kambakal who brought them one after the other and placed them on the floor in front of his desk at the reception around wee hours.

Explaining their condition, the witness disclosed that only Noghoi Njie made several attempt to walk but whenever she wants to walk she always fall down but Fatoumatta Jawara and Fatou Camara never moved until the time he left the office.

The witness revealed that he walked 24 hours on the 14th April, 2016 and closed at about 8:00am on the 15th April, 2016.

It could be recalled that the nine accused persons: Yankuba Badjie, Louie Richards Leese Gomez, Saihou Omar Jeng, Babucarr Sallah, Yusupha Jammeh, Haruna Susso, Tamba Mansary, Lamin Darboe and Lamin Lang Sanyang are indicted with 26 counts including conspiracy to commit murder, murder, assault causing grievous bodily harm, abduction, making false documents without proper authority amongst others.

Hearing continues on the 7th May, 2018.

Author: Bruce Asemota